Anti-Vax Mother Creates Deceptive GoFundMe to “Protect Her Kids”

Anti-Vax Mother Creates Deceptive GoFundMe to “Protect Her Kids” November 18, 2018
Photo courtesy of GoFundMe

Earlier this morning, a reader dropped a few screenshots into my inbox. The story involves a mother using GoFundMe to solicit donations for a custody battle. On the GoFundMe campaign, the mother pleads for help to fight her husband for custody of her children. However, screenshots obtained by my source indicate the mother is not truthful about the need for money. In fact, the mother admitted on Facebook that she needed the money to prevent her husband from vaccinating her children.

On GoFundMe the campaign is titled, “Mom trying to protect her young children,” organizer, Marilyn Shannon pleas, to help a friend in need. According to Marilyn, the mother left her husband to protect her children. She writes:

“*To protect the safety of this family we’ve opted to not disclose their identities.

Imagine the last 6 years being a stay-at-home mom. You’ve been taking care of your kids, your husband and your home. Then imagine an unsettling feeling begins. You know something is happening but you can’t put your finger on it. This feeling grows strong enough to make you flee your home with your children. As a result, you are homeless and penniless without the ability to legally protect your children. YOU HAVE NOTHING!!

The ex has access to free and unlimited legal counsel, yet you no longer have access to marital money. You scramble to get a full-time job, to apply for benefits and to find help anywhere you can. However, he has the high dollar attorney that costs him nothing and the clock is ticking. You’ve been to Legal Aid and told they will let you know if someone will take your case. You’ve been to lawyers who all want retainers, but you have no money. What would you do?”

On the surface the story is compelling. Donors that are reading the plea might feel empathy for the mother. According to the update, the mother is fleeing from a dangerous situation. The father, in this case, is withholding money and shelter from his children.

Because the mother did not work, the mother appears to helpless and desperate. She has no access to funds, can’t find a job, and her husband controls the purse strings. The mother needs a lawyer to fight her horrible husband.

Donors reading the update will naturally feel empathy for the plight of the mother. No one wants to think of a mother and her children living homeless.

Individuals flocked to the campaign to donate to the mother in need. Comments by the donors included the following:

As expected, the campaign is eliciting the reaction most people should have after reading the story. The balance on the GoFundMe has reached $2135.00 in less than a day. Based on the donations, the mother should be able to meet her $10,000 goal quickly.

Unfortunately, the campaign is not at all what it seems. Yesterday after the campaign went online, the mother took to a Facebook group, Vaccine Truth Movement, to share the link. In the post, the truth came out about why she needed the money.

The mother says, “Can you please share and donate? My husband is about to get full custody of my kids and wants to vaccinate them according to the CDC schedule. Please help me!”

Apparently, the father, in this case, wants to vaccinate his children. The mother is an anti-vaxxer and does not agree with his choice to immunize the kids. While we do not know why the mother left the father, we could deduce that the “unsettling feeling” the mother had about her husband related to vaccines.

What the mother and campaign fail to mention is that parents that refuse to vaccinate are starting to get into legal trouble in custody cases.  Judges in custody cases are beginning to clamp down on anti-vaccine parents. A woman in Detroit, Rebecca Bredow, lost primary custody of her child due to her refusal to vaccinate him.

A court-ordered Rebecca to vaccinate her 9-year-old son, and she refused to vaccinate him. Following the refusal, a judge ordered her to jail for five days. After Rebecca served her jail sentence, the judge reduced her custody. She and the father now share 50/50 custody.

While we do not know specifics of the custody fight between the mother and father from the GoFundMe campaign, the father is likely petitioning the court for custody related to the mother’s failure to vaccinate.

Now the mother is using a fictitious and vague story to elicit donations to fight her husband. The father is painted as evil and financially abusing the mother and kids. There is a reason to believe based on the screenshots that the father has the best interests of the children at heart.

GoFundMe fraud is “rare” according to the site, but we uncover fraudulent campaigns every single day. Clearly, this campaign is predicated on a lie. The mother only wants to protect her children from vaccines, not from their father.

Please report this campaign for fraud.



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What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • Rann

    To put things in perspective….. $10,000 is approximately the current cost of ONE DAY in a family court in the Province of Ontario

  • Defensis Prime

    I think the campaign has been reopened. I just visited through the link on the story and clicked ‘Donate’, which was in place of the ‘No longer accepting’ notice, and damned if it didn’t seem like it was gonna let me do so…

  • Raging Bee

    On the surface the story is compelling.

    No it’s not. It’s frakking hysterical and delusional. An “unsettling feeling” that just grows out of nothing (nothing specified anyway) until she just leaves her husband? The husband has both unlimited wealth and high-priced lawyers who do his evil bidding for free? This isn’t a “compelling story,” it’s a bad draft of a bad Gothic-romance novel. Why ANYONE would be suckered out of any money by tripe like this is beyond me…

  • Defensis Prime
  • I said on the surface 😉

  • I know. I removed the update

  • Zigzag64

    I reported the campain, but i guess we will see if anything actually happens.

  • Adrian

    Because for lots of people critical thinking doesn’t come naturally, while emotional (over)reaction does?

  • The vagueness implies that none of it is true.
    Places like Vaccine Truth Movement would be a good source of gullible fools who might donate. I wouldn’t be surprised if she has also posted similar, but different themed, stories in numerous facebook groups that consist of mostly gullible but sympathetic members.

  • Chi

    I’ve reported it too. Hopefully if they get enough reports they’ll pull it.

  • Glandu

    AntiVaccing is murder.

  • Christine Melcher


    The language used in the campaign is showing the mom and kids to be unsafe with the dad and mom needing money to keep her and the kids safe and dad having numerous resources that the mom does not have.
    Yet, the only reason mom left is because dad wants to vaccinate the children and has an active custody case in court and mom is fighting it.
    The organizer is NOT mom and is organizing on behalf of mom.

    Per the campaign: “*To protect the safety of this family we’ve opted to not disclose their identities.”

    Per a Facebook Group Posting by mom: “the mother took to a Facebook group, Vaccine Truth Movement, to share the link. In the post, the truth came out about why she needed the money.

    The mother says, “Can you please share and donate? My husband is about to get full custody of my kids and wants to vaccinate them according to the CDC schedule. Please help me!”

    As you can see, the organizer is soliciting funds based solely on fraudulent information.

  • anne marie hovgaard

    My first thought was that this sounds like the early stages of a psychotic disorder.

  • Bakerlady

    Has it ever occurred to you numb skulls that maybe there’s a reason for the lack of detail? Perhaps there is an open investigation for something completely unrelated to your silly vaccine theory, that would’ve prompted the mother to flee their home? Shame on you for attempting to hinder this poor family’s livelihood when you don’t actually know anything about their story.

  • Specky

    The GoFundMe account is no longer accepting donations. 🙂

  • It’s not so much they’re clamping down on anti-vaxxers in custody cases so much as it is that there’s a presumption in favour of the parent who wants to vaccinate – the legal rationale is likely that the anti-vax parent has shown that they can’t put their kids above their ego….only in more legal terms.

  • Julie Redl

    Mom fleeing from abuse and being unable to fund her legal protection is a VERY real issue that happens daily in Family Courts. Her vaccine choices are unrelated, and making this about vaccines is only hurting the mother and children further.

  • Raging Bee

    I agree — but we’re not the ones “making this about vaccines,” she is.

  • Raging Bee

    That may be a good reason for lack of detail, but it’s not a good reason for the ridiculous melodramatic hyperbole. She could have just said “I can’t go into detail because there’s an open investigation,” instead of raving about “unsettling feelings” and all-powerful conspiracies by well-heeled men.

  • Bakerlady

    You obviously have way too much time on your hands and I pity you. I hope you sleep well at night knowing that you are trying to destroy a woman’s opportunity at saving her children from a terrible situation. I only hope that you and your children are never in her shoes. Happy F$&@!ng Thanksgiving.

  • Raging Bee

    Based on the information available so far, I don’t know that, and neither do you. That’s kinda the point of this whole post.

  • correct. Vagueness implies deception

  • Karla Castillo